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Steven Schwartz, professor of Chemistry and Biochemistry and Applied Mathematics

Courtesy Steven Schwartz
Pictured above is Regent Professor Schwartz and his wife (Jil C. Tardiff, M.D., Ph.D.,Gootter Endowed Chair for the Prevention of Sudden Cardiac Death) during a hike in Oregon.

Steven Schwartz, professor of Chemistry and Biochemistry and Applied Mathematics,  became one of University of Arizona’s five new regents professors after the Arizona Board of Regents voted to approve his appointment during their April 6th meeting on campus. 

“I was honored when I found out I was to be named a regent’s professor. The quality of the faculty here at the University of Arizona is pretty good but I have never known a regents professor who I did not have a great amount of respect for,” Schwartz said. 

Schwartz is a relative newcomer to the UA. He joined the faculty six years ago alongside his wife of thirty years. Schwartz spent his undergraduate years at Columbia before completing his Ph.D. in theoretical chemistry at University of California Berkeley. 

          RELATED: Regents approve 2-percent increase in base tuition

Since coming to UA, Schwartz has been very involved on campus teaching a variety of courses, overseeing a productive research lab, and serving in faculty governance.  

“There are no impediments at UA to getting involved. I have only been here six years but I am involved in faculty governance and more, there is no exclusive club,” Schwartz said. 

Schwartz teaches physical chemistry to undergraduates, a number of graduate courses, and is working alongside a friend to develop a new general chemistry course for UA freshmen.

Schwartz’s research lab, which is a team of ten UA faculty and students, examines the physical and chemical processes of complex systems. Right now, he is studying the control mechanisms of the beating heart and the physical properties of micelles, which are like soap bubbles living organisms produce. Schwartz is funded by four grants from the government. 

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For the last four years, Schwartz has served as chair of the influential Committee of Eleven. The Committee of Eleven is an independent body elected by the faculty which plays a role in faculty governance on campus, recommending changes and providing advice to the administration on important decisions.  

Only three percent of tenured faculty are named Regents’ Professors by ABOR, due to his standout scholarship, research, and teaching, Schwartz is now one of them. 

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